Reducing travel stress with a chatbot

Challenge: how to create a seamless travel experience for Avianca’s Airlines customers?

When you’re running to catch a flight, it’s not just big-ticket disruptions like cancellations that create worry. The little things matter too, especially for inexperienced travelers. Colombian airline Avianca, the second largest in Latin America, saw a way to differentiate their business in a very competitive industry.

By supporting flyers through the more routine tasks – check-in, flight status, seat changes – with a simple and accessible mobile solution, they could lower the stress of traveling – and raise the bar for customer experience.

Our Solution: a travel-along chatbot helping customers anytime, any place

Avianca checked in with Accenture Interactive and we landed on a solution we knew would take off. By creating a chatbot on Facebook Messenger, Avianca would have instant access to their customers through a widely adopted, familiar platform. So we built Carla, an Avianca-branded Facebook chatbot, using the latest in artificial intelligence technology.

Carla offers customers a simple, intuitive way to manage their travel at their point of need – on a platform they’re already using. That completely eliminates any need to make a separate phone call, download a new app, or visit the company’s website.

Results: within 6 weeks Carla is ready to help – and improve

This journey would reach its destination at supersonic speed. Building Carla’s underlying platform in the AWS Cloud offered the development pace and processing performance Avianca needed. Plus, the company could scale during peak periods without affecting customer experience. And they could dynamically manage Carla’s dialogue during customer interactions.

In just six weeks, Carla was ready. She offered cutting-edge customer service through domestic check-in, itinerary checking, flight status updates, weather conditions, simple translations, and other useful reminders. Carla helped more than 1,000 Avianca customers and had nearly 4,000 different conversations in this initial time period. As for a clear business impact: waiting times were cut by half when Carla was used to check-in. That’s the kind of result a business sees when the idea of the digital core takes flight.

Best of all, Carla’s natural style of conversation would mean travelers never felt they were talking to a machine. With her pleasant tone, instant responses and ability to answer follow-up questions, she sounds just like a real person – but one that’s on call 24/7.

Related opportunities

  • Would you be confident enough in your knowledge to advise a company to follow a full digital transformation? Maybe Strategy & Consulting could be a good fit for you
  • Do you think you would enjoy finding effective solutions for complex technology implementation problems? Then maybe you would be great in Operations or Technology
  • Would you want to explore the possibilities that come with new technologies or develop fantastic user experiences? Try Interactive or Technology


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